You had a brain aneurysm. An aneurysm is a weak area in the wall of a blood vessel that bulges or balloons out. Once it reaches a certain size, it has a high chance of bursting. It can leak blood and cause bleeding along the surface of the brain. This is also called a subarachnoid hemorrhage. Sometimes bleeding can occur inside the brain.
You had surgery to prevent the aneurysm from bleeding or to treat the aneurysm after it bled. There are two types of surgery:
If you had bleeding before, during, or after surgery you may have some short- or long-term problems. These may be mild or severe. For many people, these problems decrease over time.
If you had either type of surgery you may:
What to expect after craniotomy and placement of a clip:
What to expect after endovascular repair:
You may be able to start daily activities, such as driving a car, within 1 or 2 weeks if you did not have any bleeding. Ask your doctor which daily activities are safe for you to do.
Make plans to have help at home while you recover.
Follow a healthy lifestyle.
Take your seizure medicine if any was prescribed for you. Your doctor may refer you to a speech, physical, or occupational therapist to help you recover from any brain damage.
If the doctor put a catheter in through your groin (endovascular surgery), it is okay to walk short distances on a flat surface. Limit going up and down stairs to around 2 times a day for 2 to 3 days. DO NOT do yard work, drive, or play sports until your doctor says it is okay to do so.
Your health care provider will tell you when your dressing should be changed. DO NOT take a bath or swim for 1 week.
If you have a small amount of bleeding from the incision, lie down and put pressure where it bleeds for 30 minutes.
Be sure you understand any instructions about taking medicines such as blood thinners (anticoagulants), aspirin, or nonsteroidal anti-inflammatory drugs (NSAIDs), such as ibuprofen and naproxen.
Call your doctor if you have:
Also, call your doctor if you have:
Make sure to follow-up with your surgeon's office within 2 weeks of being discharged from the hospital.
Ask your doctor if you need long-term follow-up and tests, including CT scans or MRIs of your head.
If you had a cerebral spinal fluid (CSF) shunt placed after aneurysm surgery, you will need regular follow-ups to make sure it functions well.
Aneurysm repair - cerebral - discharge; Cerebral aneurysm repair - discharge; Coiling - discharge; Saccular aneurysm repair - discharge; Berry aneurysm repair - discharge; Fusiform aneurysm repair - discharge; Dissecting aneurysm repair - discharge; Endovascular aneurysm repair - discharge
Connolly ES Jr, Rabinstein AA, Carhuapoma JR, et al. American Heart Association Stroke Council; Council on Cardiovascular Radiology and Intervention; Council on Cardiovascular Nursing; Council on Cardiovascular Surgery and Anesthesia; Council on Clinical Cardiology. Guidelines for the management of aneurysmal subarachnoid hemorrhage: a guideline for healthcare professionals from the American Heart Association/American Stroke Association. Stroke. 2012;43:1711-1737. PMID: 22556195 Available at: www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/?term=22556195.
Tateshima S, Duckwiler G. Vascular diseases of the nervous system: intracranial aneurysms and subarachnoid hemorrhage. In: Daroff RB, Fenichel GM, Jankovic J, Mazziotta JC, eds. Bradley's Neurology in Clinical Practice. 6th ed. Philadelphia, PA: Elsevier Saunders; 2012:chap 51C.
Updated by: Luc Jasmin, MD, PhD, Department of Surgery Providence Hospital, Medford, OR, Department of Neurosurgery at Cedars-Sinai Medical Center, Los Angeles, CA, and Department of Oral and Maxillofacial Surgery at UCSF, San Francisco, CA. Review provided by VeriMed Healthcare Network. Also reviewed by David Zieve, MD, MHA, Isla Ogilvie, PhD, and the A.D.A.M. Editorial team.
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